Unlike the other titans of social media, Instagram is a new kid on the block. Facebook kicked off in 2004; YouTube followed a year later. The first tweets were way back in 2006. The world would have to wait until 2010 for Instagram to appear on the virtual horizon. Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger created the app after photo-sharing proved a popular feature of their first app attempt. The result was a runaway success.

Soon everyone was snapping a picture of their brunch or uploading their holiday photos. Is it Instagrammable? became the go-to question.

Success attracts the investment of big tech companies. In 2012, Facebook snapped up Instagram for $1 billion and managed the photo-sharing service ever since. The integration of filters and the famous 1:1 square photo ratio has become synonymous with modern photography, changing the cultural landscape.

By 2020, the app boasted a phenomenal 1 billion monthly active users, with more than 500 million people checking the app daily.

Today, video has become key to maintaining audience engagement and has launched an entire industry of video production services, but what does the future hold?


Key Instagram Statistics for the United Kingdom

  • There are an estimated 30.6 million Instagram users in the UK
  • 46% of the UK population have an Instagram account
  • Across all age groups, 25-34 year olds use Instagram the most in the UK, accounting for a 30.1% share
  • Instagram is used by women more than men in the UK. Women account for 57% of usage compared to 42% for men.
  • 54% use instagram several times a day
  • People spend an average of 32 minutes browsing Instagram each day in the UK
  • Instagram generates over £3.59b in ad revenue in the UK
  • The USA has the highest number of Instagram users, totalling 280m, compared to the UK which has 30.6m users.
  • Instagram is the fourth largest social media site with a market share of 1.78%
  • Around 80% of users are looking for inspiration from the businesses and brands they follow

How many people use Instagram in the UK?

According to Statista, in June 2020, Instagram had 30.6 million users in the United Kingdom. That’s up from 24 million Instagram users at the beginning of 2019. Such rapid growth suggests that business is currently surging compared with other social media sites. Around 54% of Instagram users report using the platform several times a day, indicating high-engagement from the userbase. However, the UK ranks as a relatively small proportion of the over 1 billion users worldwide.

Number of Instagram users UK

What percentage of the UK have Instagram?

Considering there are 30.6 million users of Instagram, with a total population of around 67 million, approximately 46% of the UK have and use Instagram. According to Instagram themselves, about 42% of the UK population are reachable with advertising.

With over 25 million business profiles now active worldwide, the platform has transformed into an advertiser’s dream. More than 80% of accounts follow businesses, making the app a vital connection between makers and consumers. This trend shows no signs of abating.

Percentage of Instagram users UK

How many Instagram accounts are there?

Despite having 1 billion monthly active users and 500 million daily active users, research suggests that 9.5% or 95 million Instagram users could be bots. Collectively, these fake accounts cost the business $1.3 billion in 2019. The figure suggests then that there are 990.5 million accounts.

However, there is a catch. Users can link up to five accounts to their app. The vast majority of users stick with one account. But for businesses trying to showcase different aspects of their brand, many have more than one account. Therefore, calculating the number of accounts is impossible to estimate accurately – Instagram does not release information on the average number of accounts per user.

What age group uses Instagram the most in the UK?

Instagram is overwhelmingly used by younger people. The largest share of Instagram users was the 25-34 age group, comprising 30.1% of all UK users. 18–24-year-olds were next with 26.1% of the user share. Meanwhile, 45-54 were only 10.5% of users, and the over 65s were a minuscule 2.5%.

Suppose Instagram follows the trends of other social media platforms. In that case, we can expect the older generations to adopt the app after growth amongst the younger market stagnates.

Instagram users by age group UK

What gender uses Instagram the most in the UK?

Unlike many other social media sites, where men hold the numerical advantage, the Instagram userbase is female-led.

The gender split seems to be becoming more pronounced. In early 2020 the split was only 54% females to 46% males.

Now, around 57% of all users are female, with 42% being male. Both genders showed a similar distribution amongst age groups. However, the single biggest age-gender demographic was women aged 25-34, comprising 16.3% of all users.

Interestingly, worldwide the split is less obvious. In the US, males lead age groups 18-24 and 25-34. Whereas in all age groups over the age of 35, women are the majority. Despite this age-gender split, women use the platform marginally more in the US, with a 51% hold.

Instagram users by gender UK

How long do people spend on Instagram in the UK?

In the UK, 54% of Instagram users were found to use the platform several times a day. A further 12% used Instagram only a few times a week. In recent years, the trend has been for increased usage, with a little under half of all users reporting using the app a lot more in the past year.

Instagram usage frequency UK

Worldwide, on average, Instagram users spend 32 minutes per day on the app. But that depends on the age group in question. Under 25s spend more than 32 minutes per day. Whereas 25s and over, spend more than 24 minutes per day. For children in the UK, the average time spent is far higher. Children spend 48 minutes per day surfing Instagram, compared to 39 minutes on Snapchat.

Time spent on Instagram UK

How much ad revenue does Instagram generate worldwide?

In the UK, social media advertising constitutes £3.59 billion per year. That’s around 23% of the total digital ad spend. However, year on year, the social media ad spend is increasing. The percentage-spend on Instagram is unknown. However, in the US alone, Instagram generated $12.32 billion in 2020, with an expected $15.65 billion growth in 2021. Worldwide, Instagram made $20 billion in ad revenue in 2019. That was more than a quarter of Facebook’s total earnings, proving the 2012 investment to be a lucrative choice.

Instagram ad revenue UK

Which country uses Instagram the most?

The home of Instagram, the United States, is the biggest Instagram market, with over a tenth of all users – 140 million users as of October 2020. Next up was India with 120 million users, followed by Brazil and Indonesia with 95 million and 78 million users, respectively.

The UK is ninth on the list worldwide, but aside from Russia, it leads European use. Germany and Italy are the next most popular European markets, with 25 million and 24 million apiece.

Surprisingly, the country with the highest Instagram percentage reach is Kazakhstan, with 72% of the country using the app. Brunei follows them at 71%, and Iceland at 67%.

Number of Instagram users by country

What percentage of the world uses Instagram?

With the global population clocking around 7.8 billion people and over 1 billion monthly users, around 12.9% of humanity checks their profile monthly. Their monthly user base is equivalent to the total population of Europe and North America combined. To put that in perspective, of the world’s 3.8 billion active social media users, around a quarter use Instagram monthly, with around 22% of the world’s internet users on the platform.

Who is the number 1 most followed person on Instagram?

The single most followed person worldwide is Cristiano Ronaldo, the Portuguese footballer, with 256 million followers. Next up is singer and actress, Ariana Grande with 217 million followers. Third place is taken by Dwayne “the Rock” Johnson, former wrestler and movie star, with 213 million followers.

The most popular Instagram account is, however, Instagram itself. It has a staggering 369 million followers.

Meanwhile, in the UK, David Beckham was the most followed Instagram star with 50.6 million followers. Former Harry Potter actress Emma Watson had 47.8 million followers. The actress and model Cara Delevingne bagged bronze with a respectable 41.5 million followers.

Brands are often less popular than influencers themselves. However, Nike tops the lists with 90 million followers. Victoria’s Secret has 68 million followers, and Huda Beauty has 38 million followers. Showing, once and for all, the dominance of fashion and beauty on the platform.

Who or what is the most liked Instagram post?

The world’s most-liked Instagram picture is… an egg? That’s right, the world record egg from early 2019 has an incredible 54.8 million likes.


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A post shared by Eugene | #EggGang (@world_record_egg)

Before passing in May 2018, XXXTentacion posted his last message, gaining 22.9 million likes. Finally, in third place is unsurprisingly, the King of the Platform himself, Cristiano Ronaldo, whose post in remembrance of Diego Maradona racked up 19.8 million likes.